Whey Protein Vs Plant Protein | Which has More Protein?

whey protein vs plant protein

Dietary protein is essential to our overall health. Irrespective of fitness goals, we all need a certain amount of protein in our daily diet. Protein helps muscle mass growth and immune system health. This nutrient is especially important for bodybuilders who make their own meal and here’s why:

Lifting weights and working out generally tear down our muscles, leading to new muscle development. Protein helps repair, grow, and maintain the impacted muscle. So, proteins can help muscle recovery.

There are numerous kinds of protein supplements available today. But in this article, we will take a look at whey protein vs plant protein. When we talk about plant protein, we mean soy protein, pea protein, brown rice protein, and hemp protein. They are all different but equally great at what they are meant to do

What Is Whey Protein?

One of the proteins found in milk, whey protein, can be produced as a viable byproduct of cheese and yogurt. It is a complete protein since it includes all 9 essential amino acids.

A combination of beta-lactoglobulin, alpha-lactalbumin, bovine serum albumin, and immunoglobulins, whey protein, is generally low in lactose content. It has remained a favorite supplement among bodybuilders trying to put on more solid muscle and expedite weight loss.

Here are some benefits of whey protein:

  • Aids in muscle building
  • Helps with weight loss
  • Reduces blood pressure and cardiovascular disease
  • Strengthen anti-oxidants
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Helps regulate blood sugar levels

What is Plant-Based Protein?

What is Plant-Based Protein

Plant-based protein is derived from plants, and the main plant protein powder is made of hemp, peas, rice, or soybean. The raw materials are thoroughly processed to get rid of starches.

These major plant-based proteins blend with other plant sources such as flax seeds, quinoa, alfalfa, and chia seeds to make a complete amino acid profile. Plant-based proteins are slower to digest due to their fiber content.

Here are various benefits of plant-based proteins some of which are listed below:

  • Hypoallergenic
  • Helps build muscle
  • Source of fiber
  • Boosts metabolism
  • No extra antibiotics or growth hormones
  • Perfect for vegans

1. Soy Protein

Unlike many plant-based protein options, soy protein is a complete protein containing all 9 essential amino acids. Soy protein powders that are present in market have high protein content and includes many beneficial plant compounds that help lower cholesterol.

2. Pea Protein

Unlike many plant-based protein options, soy protein is a complete protein containing all 9 essential amino acids. It has a high protein content and includes many beneficial plant compounds that help lower cholesterol.

3. Hemp Protein

Hemp protein is manufactured with help of cannabis plant, but as it contains merely trace amounts of THC, it will not offer the same euphoric effects as what we know as marijuana so its safe to consume hemp protein supplements.

While Hemp protein contains all 9 essential amino acids it does fall little short in lysine. But it is high in heart-healthy omega-6 and omega-3 fats, and it is a great source of zinc, iron, magnesium, and fiber.

4. Brown Rice Protein

Brown rice powder is relatively inexpensive and more readily available, with quite a high ratio of protein. It is typically easy to digest and contains all essential amino acids, though it is a little low in lysine to be deemed a complete protein.

Plant Based Protein vs Whey Protein | Nutritional Value

ParametersWhey Protein (30 g)Soy Protein (28 g)Pea Protein (30 g)Hemp Protein (30 g)
Calories (kcal)11396120120
Protein (g)252322.515
Fat (g)0.512.253
Carb (g)
Fiber (g)0.3 g1.51.57
Iron (mg)04.452.38

Whey protein vs Plant protein | Which Is Better?

1. Protein Quality

When it comes to whey isolate, an animal-based protein, it has a higher biological value as compared to plant-based options. This means it contains ample amino acids to sate your body’s protein needs.

Whey protein is of especially high quality since it is chock-full of essential amino acids that happen to be protein-building blocks that the body cannot produce by itself. So, whey protein is great if you are trying to build muscle and promote recovery, especially after a tough workout.

Whey protein is also high in leucine, an essential amino acid in our muscle-building process, and cysteine, which helps support muscle growth and metabolism.

2. Digestion

Gastric irritation and similar digestive problems can be common side effects of whey protein, it being particularly problematic for people with dairy or lactose intolerances. But plant-based proteins are dairy-free and much less inflammatory to the digestive system.

A few plant-based shakes are boosted with digestive enzymes, which help the body assimilate protein without uncomfortable bloating or other embarrassing side effects.

3. Mixability

When it comes to whey protein, it does not taste great naturally. But throw it in some whey shakes, and you are good to go. Most whey protein powders come with artificial flavors and sweeteners to guide the taste. But if you are on the hunt for some clean and natural protein powder, go for plant-based ones.

4. Taste 

When it comes to choosing protein powders, the flavor is a genuine consideration. Both whey and plant-based proteins will taste a little unfamiliar and might require some time to get used to.

Fortunately, both are very versatile, so feel free to make a shake or a smoothie out of them. But if you are very particular about your taste, then there are tasty plant based protein available in market you can choose from. Just adjusts the flavor while also adding more healthy ingredients to the recipe.

Is Plant Protein Or Whey Protein Better For The Environment? 

Is whey protein animal based? Yes. Plant-based proteins are certified 100% organic, making them a win-win for the environment. They can add minerals and nutrients to poor soil quality while also being sustainable food sources.

Whey protein, on the other hand, is made of cheese and yogurt byproducts, making it good for ingestion. But it leaves a negative impact on cows and other natural resources, giving plant-based proteins the competitive edge when environmental protection is concerned.


Both whey and plant-based protein powders are a healthy addition to any diet and workout regimen. Consider your goals and health issues, if any, and decide on the right protein for yourself. Keep in mind other factors such as ethical concerns and taste.

All in all, if you are a vegan or lactose-intolerant, plant-based protein is a win. But whey protein is the way to go if you want a complete protein that is absorbed quickly while supporting better muscle growth and repair. We hope this article helps you figure out the type of protein you want when it comes down to whey protein vs plant protein.


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